Magazine Names Top Law Firms For Working Mothers
Firms Adopting Collaboration Technology Make The List
Comfortable clothing and an easy commute aren’t the only reasons why increasing numbers of Americans are working from home; ever-advancing communications technologies have made it easier for employees to get more out of their home offices. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, by 2010, 13.4 million people worked at least one day from home each week – an increase of more than 4 million people (35%) from the previous decade.
The option to work from home is especially appealing to parents, giving them the flexibility to spend more time with their children and make childcare arrangements. Recently, Working Mother magazine published its top 50 best law firms for working mothers, along with an article describing what the best law firms are doing to support working mom lawyers, including flexible hours, cooperative work environments and access to collaboration tools. Several Fidelus clients made the cut this year including those which have adopted new communications technologies to give their employees more flexibility to work from anywhere.
Collaboration Tools Allow Employees To Work From Home
Like the firms mentioned in the Working Mother list, Fidelus has the same goal: to allow working parents to have flexible schedules and work remotely, utilizing collaboration tools like Jabber and WebEx to keep employees connected.
Manager of HR Operations for Fidelus Technologies Suehaily Reaves is a mother of two who works from home once or twice a week, and can’t imagine her life without that flexibility.
On a “good day,” Reaves spends a total of four hours commuting to Fidelus headquarters in Midtown Manhattan – more if there is traffic on the George Washington Bridge.
“My commute is quite long because quality childcare is really important,” she explains.
Reaves’ home office includes a docking station for her laptop, dual monitors and a Cisco 8865 IP phone. She stays connected with her teammates in the office throughout the day using Jabber, WebEx and Spark. Right now, Jabber – an instant messaging platform that integrates video and audio communications while connecting to the overall Cisco communication infrastructure – is her favorite.
“It is great to be able to instant message anyone on the team when I cannot walk over to his or her desk. It is helpful to see he presence status of anyone that I need to get a hold of,” she says. “I love that I can have a video call using Jabber. It makes me feel more connected even though I am not in the office.”
Jabber, WebEx and Spark Offer A Seamless Transition To Home Offices
Reaves describes her home office function compared to her Fidelus headquarters office as “pretty seamless.” Her set-up at home mimics her desk at work, so on mornings when she works from home, it’s “get up and go.”
A common complaint from parents who work remotely is that their children can be a distraction. Reaves notes that even on days when she works from home, her children still go to daycare, but the time she doesn’t spend commuting permits her to do things like cook a homemade dinner and run errands.
“Tools like WebEx and single number reach allow me the opportunity to do household things during the week. That means I can spend my whole weekend spending quality time with my family, and that’s really what it’s all about,” she adds.
Reaves worked for Fidelus at the time she had her two children – Timothy (2 ½) and Paloma (1) – and doesn’t want to imagine what her life would be like without the option to work from home.
“I do not think I could make being a full-time manager and being a mom work without the flexibility that I have now. I am very fortunate,” she explains. “I hope that as more companies adopt this technology, more moms will have this flexibility which helps alleviate some of the pressure that working mothers feel.”[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][mk_custom_box bg_color=”#f6f6f6″ bg_position=”left top” bg_repeat=”repeat” bg_stretch=”false” padding_vertical=”30″ padding_horizental=”20″ margin_bottom=”10″ min_height=”100″][vc_column_text disable_pattern=”true” align=”center” margin_bottom=”0″]